…It’s not selfish for the caregiver to focus on his or her own situation part of the time. It’s essential.
…As Weil puts it, the heart takes oxygen from the blood for itself first. If it didn’t, the body would die. Hearts are pretty smart, not selfish.
…These days, caregivers are usually Sandwich Generation Women, juggling kids on one hand and an aging parent (or two, three, or four) on the other. Kids get sick, too, remember.
…To add to the fun, the caregiver may have health issues. Omigod, it’s a mad whirl of waiting rooms. What about work, love, creativity?
…50 million people are taking care of someone in the United States.
…Weil says they must put themselves in the priority list—who will do the caring if they get sick or die?
…Realize you may suffer some resentment. Sitting in a hospital, running up and downstairs, putting your own life on hold—this can cause resentment.
…Destress yourself. Find some breathing exercises. Or just sit and observe your breath going in and out.
…Eat properly. Fast food is probably a mistake.
…Exercise. Walk the dog. Park a distance from the hospital and walk over.
…Watch the alcohol. Especially when you first start caregiving, a lot of emotions are in play.
….Always have something to look forward to. Read a book for an hour. Go to a concert.
…Find a caregiver or group dealing with the same disease or problem. You can get tips.
…Be prepared to say good-bye. But everyday does not have to be sad. In fact, watching a funny TV show is good for everyone.